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S&P Global Market Intelligence offers our top picks of global private equity news stories and more published throughout the week.

On the road again

2019 was a big year for Sweden-headquartered buyout house EQT AB, and it is already setting its sights high for 2020, announcing its intention to raise €14.75 billion for its latest flagship fund EQT IX.

The target is 35% higher than its predecessor, which closed in February 2018, but it is worth noting that it may ultimately be higher or lower, as per EQT's release, depending on the success of the fundraise.

EQT, which has assets under management of about €41 billion, announced in November that it was waiting for the €10.9 billion EQT VIII to reach 80% to 90% invested before rejoining the fundraising trail. This was expected to take six months to a year, CFO Kim Henriksson said on the firm's third-quarter earnings call.

EQT listed on Nasdaq Stockholm at 67 kronor per share in September 2019 in what has become a rare move following the listings of alternative asset giants in the late 2000s and the early part of the last decade — these firms have been making recent model conversions to boost their shareholder base. The firm took the plunge in a bid to "increase its financial flexibility" for growth, including expansion across geographies and new investment strategies, EQT said in its prospectus.

The investment group has sought to become a global player, broadening its investment focus beyond Northern Europe. It was involved in one of the most sizeable U.S. deal announcements last year, acquiring infrastructure provider Zayo Group Holdings Inc. alongside Digital Colony Partners LP in a $14.5 billion transaction.

As of Jan. 16, US$1 was equivalent to 9.50 Swedish kronor, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data.

Flush with cash

* Lexington Partners LP amassed $14 billion for Lexington Capital Partners IX LP and related vehicles, surpassing the initial target of $12 billion. The fund will invest in private equity and alternative assets across global sectors through negotiated secondary market deals.

* Stone Point Capital LLC held a final close for its eighth private equity fund with $7 billion in capital commitments.

* The Blackstone Group Inc. collected about $3.97 billion out of the $4.5 billion target for its third energy-focused vehicle.

* HarbourVest Partners LLC garnered $2.61 billion for HarbourVest Fund XI.

* KKR & Co. Inc. secured $2.2 billion for KKR Next Generation Technology Growth Fund II SCSp.

SNL ImageAn Albertsons supermarket in Mountain View, Calif.
Source: AP Photo

Road to IPO

* Albertsons Cos. Inc. is expected to decide in the coming weeks whether it will proceed with a public listing that could give the Cerberus Capital Management LP-backed grocer a valuation of about $19 billion, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing sources familiar with the matter.

* Beijing Zhongtai Chuanghui Private Equity Fund Management Co. Ltd.-backed flexible-display maker Royole Corp. has confidentially filed for a U.S. IPO in a bid to raise roughly $1 billion, Bloomberg News reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

Selling point

* American Infrastructure Funds LLC is exploring a more than $2 billion sale for Safe Harbor Marinas LLC, Bloomberg reported, citing people with knowledge of the matter.

* Fujifilm Holdings Corp. joined in the race to acquire French medical imaging supplies maker Curium Pharma from CapVest Ltd., Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

SNL ImageSteel coils at the ThyssenKrupp facility in Duisburg, Germany.
Source: AP Photo

Purchasing power

* An investor group led by Advent International Corp. and Cinven brought in Evonik controlling shareholder RAG-Stiftung in its bid for thyssenkrupp AG's €15 billion elevator unit, Reuters reported, citing two sources familiar with the matter.

* KKR plans to deploy an additional $150 million into its majority-owned alternative credit arm, KKR India Financial Services Ltd.

* Blackstone is investing as much as 3.8 billion Indian rupees for a stake in Allcargo Logistics Ltd.'s warehousing business.

* IK Investment Partners will buy a majority stake in Dutch specialized outsourced service provider Acture Groep from its founders.

* KPS Capital Partners LP agreed to pay $85 million in cash and notes for Harsco Corp.'s industrial unit IKG.

Sector intelligence

Banking Blank-check IPO proceeds hit new record in 2019 as Wall Street buys in

Energy Oil, gas purchases a cornerstone to US-China trade deal

ESG With divestment off table, passive funds look to retool engagement strategies

Fintech Megadeals in payments, brokerage sectors shape 2019 M&A advisory league tables

Healthcare Pharmaceutical industry embraces digital health for drug development, trials

Insurance Certain perils becoming pricier, harder to cover as climate risks grow

Metals Gold rises on fresh Iran sanctions amid buoyant copper ahead of China deal

Private equity PE expects 'more of the same' in 2020 despite ongoing threat of downturn

Real estate Morgan Stanley takes crown in 2019 REIT M&A league table

Retail, consumer products, gaming and leisure Amazon could face antitrust suit in 2020, but asset breakup unlikely

Technology, media and telecommunications Analysts skeptical as state challenge to Sprint/T-Mobile nears conclusion